Toronto cop taking heat for arguing with random strangers on social media
Increased police patrols on the TTC, intended to make riders feel safer, appear to be doing exactly as critics predicted and targeting riders for fare evasion.
One Toronto cop proudly boasted of turning away more than 100 would-be TTC riders in just one hour, and when social media commenters didn't like it, the police officer vigorously defended himself in comments.
Toronto Police officer Kyriakos Papadopoulos, known to his followers as PC Pappy, called out fare evaders in his tweet, stressing that many of those turned away did indeed have cash or a Presto card on hand.
Over 100 riders were turned away after 1-hour of monitoring.— PCPapadopoulos (@PCPappy) February 6, 2023
Do you know what part is frustrating? They have a valid Presto card or money to pay. They choose not to pay & argue with Police & TTC staff.
Fair Evasion penalty of $425.
Pay your ride as others do. #TTC pic.twitter.com/2JFhxruTs1
But when commenters called out the officer for his enforcement brag, let's just say Pappy got a bit snappy.
I can't believe our taxes are going to pay this guy to make snarky comments to people on twitter. The police love to give us more incentives to dislike them. I guess this is what they call "community outreach". #TOpoli https://t.co/DEjMzBxwVh pic.twitter.com/KITRTlIpOa— Redux (@R3dux_66) February 6, 2023
The condescending tone of the replies rubbed many the wrong way, with one commenter saying, "if I tweeted like that from my work account, I'd be fired the next day."
Another commenter told Papadopoulos to quit his job, earning another sarcastic response.
Nah. I love serving my community. The lives I saved I will never forget. Thanks though. Good luck with what you do.— PCPapadopoulos (@PCPappy) February 6, 2023
Personal injury lawyer and cycling advocate David Shellnutt tweeted, "I wonder if this cop gets this jazzed up about handing out fines to dangerous drivers or if it's just a Burlington bred hate on for people who use public transit? Ah nevermind, policing isn't the solution to road safety anyways."
Critics are using terms like "war on the poor" and calling out the apparent police focus on transit enforcement rather than ticketing motorists.
Things I often see in Toronto— stevefoote123 (@Stephenfoote) February 6, 2023
- having a drink in the park enforcement
- TTC fare enforcement
Things I never see in Toronto
- aggressive driving enforcement
Parking ticket $30 dollars. Fare evasion ticket $425
It’s a war on the poor. If you have a car/house things are good.
For a thread about police presence on public transit, there is a surprising amount of discussion centred around speed and traffic enforcement and how it arguably poses a much greater risk than fare evasion and random attacks.
They are busy putting a horse on da subway https://t.co/oqweY7WiNb— Dan Seljak (@anotherglassbox) February 7, 2023
blogTO has reached out to Papadopoulos for the opportunity to defend his comments, but the officer has yet to respond to the inquiry as of writing.
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